EXCLUSIVE: 20th Century Fox is setting Nicholas Hoult for the role of Beast in the Matthew Vaughn-directed X-Men: First Class. Hoult made his first screen impression playing the bullied school kid reluctantly adopted by Hugh Grant in About a Boy. But he has grown into manhood in recent roles that included A Single Man and Clash of the Titans, and he is also booked for the cast of the George Miller-directed Mad Max: Fury Road for Warner Bros. Latter film was pushed back, and so Hoult will first make X-Men: First Class. Hoult joins James McAvoy (Xavier), Michael Fassbender (Magneto) and Alice Eve (Emma Frost). Fox will cast up quickly as a production start is imminent. Hoult is repped by UTA and UK-based Independent Talent Group. Fox hasn’t yet confirmed his deal.